Federal court dismisses challenge to Illinois Covid orders (Religion Clause) Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church and Logos Baptist Ministries challenged Gov. Jay Pritzker’s lockdown regulations of churches; the regulations are no longer in force. Judge Robert Gettleman, named to the bench by President Clinton in 1994, dismissed the challenge, ruling that “it is absolutely clear that the alleged wrongful behavior— restrictions on religion due to the COVID-19 pandemic— are not reasonably expected to recur.”
McCarrick faces criminal charge for assault on minor (AP) Disgraced former cardinal Theodore McCarrick has been charged with a sexual assault on a teenage boy. The charge involves an incident that allegedly took place in Massachusetts in 1974. Because McCarrick was not a Massachusetts resident, and left the state shortly after the alleged incident, the statute of limitations has not expired and a criminal charge can be pursued. McCarrick was laicized in 2019 because of his sexual misconduct and abuse of the confessional.
Irish archbishop lashes 'groupthink' on faith in mainstream media (Irish Catholic) “We are in a season of transition, watching the collapse of the world as we have known it,” Archbishop Michael Neary of Tuam preached during a homily. “In a society enslaved by the tyranny of ‘relevance,’ the truth of the Gospel can easily be dismissed because it is too challenging to hear, or, because it is perceived to be unsuitable in an open, modern and progressive society.”
As Vatican trial opens, defendants say prosecution not prepared (Crux) The first day of a highly anticipated Vatican trial ended, as expected, with an adjournment, with hearings to resume on October 5. The initial hearing was devoted to procedural motions. Lawyers for the defendants—who are charged with a variety of financial crimes—complained that the prosecution had not yet fully informed them about the charges. Several defendants also entered claimed that the Vatican tribunal lacks jurisdiction, since the alleged crimes involve actions that did not take place within Vatican territory.
New 'patriotic' Chinese bishop ordained; 'underground' priest arrested (AsiaNews) Bishop Li Hui was consecrated July 27 as the coadjutor bishop of Pingliang, with approval of both the Holy See and the Chinese regime. The ceremony—the third since a secret Vatican-Beijing accord was renewed last October—was led by Bishop Ma Yinglin, the vice-president of the government-backed Patriotic Catholic Association.
In a separate incident, Father Joseph Liu of the Mindong diocese was arrested and tortured by police, AsiaNews reports, because he refused to join the Patriotic Association.
Federal appeals court rules against web designer who objects to creating same-sex marriage sites (Religion Clause) “A Colorado law forces web designer Lorie Smith and her studio, 303 Creative, to design and publish websites promoting messages that violate her religious beliefs,” stated her legal counsel, Alliance Defending Freedom. “The law at issue also gags Smith from even explaining on her company’s website what websites she can create consistent with her religious beliefs.”Colorado’s Anti-Discrimination Act “permissibly compels [Smith’s] speech,” the 10th Circuit ruled. “A faith that enriches society in one way might also damage society in other ways, particularly when that faith would exclude others from unique goods or services.”
Priest attacked in Edinburgh cathedral (The Scottish Sun) Wielding a bottle as a weapon, a man attacked Father Jamie McMorrin, assistant priest at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Edinburgh, while the priest was praying in a pew. The priest “managed to fend him off with a chair before the attacker ran out of the Cathedral,” the archdiocese said in a statement.“This was terrible, frightening and totally unacceptable,” said John Swinney, Scotland’s second-leading official.
Bishops condemn UK's imposition of abortion in Northern Ireland (Irish Catholic Bishops' Conference) The directive by the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Brandon Lewis, “to make abortion services available in Northern Ireland by 21 March 2022, is gravely disquieting,” Northern Ireland’s bishops said in a statement. “Westminster has imposed an unjust law. Christians, and all people of good will, can never ignore the fact that unborn children are human beings worthy of protection.”“Sadly, some of our local political parties seem content to welcome this unilateral move by Westminster on an issue which is of fundamental importance to local voters, while rightly challenging such unilateral impositions on other issues,” the bishops added. “We encourage everyone who believes in the equal right to life and compassionate care for a mother and her unborn child to ask local candidates and political parties to explain their position on these interventions and on this most fundamental of all issues.”
Cardinal Gregory cancels Latin Mass in DC (Rorate Caeli) Cardinal Wilton Gregory has withdrawn permission for the celebration of a traditional Latin Mass at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC. The Mass—sponsored by the Paulus Institute, a group dedicated to the traditional liturgy—had been scheduled last year, but was postponed because of the Covid lockdown; the sponsoring organization had secured permission for a new date: August 14. But after the promulgation of Traditionis Custodes, Cardinal Gregory announced that any new celebration would require his approval, and he refused to allow this celebration.
The celebrant for the August 14 Mass was to have been Archbishop Thomas Gullickson, an American prelate who retired in 2020 after years of service in Vatican diplomacy, most recently as papal nuncio in Ukraine.